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Cheranovski BICh-11 / RP-1
Boris Cheranovski next to the BICh-11 prototype
The BICh-11 appeared in 1932 as a continuation of the trapezoidal wing design started with the BICh-8 glider. Its construction was developed in the TsAGI workshops. The Cheranovski BICh-11 (RP-1) (Russian: Черановский БИЧ-11 (РП-1)), conceived in 1931, became the world's first experimental aircraft in a flying wing configuration designed to use a reactive power plant. Problems with the development of the reactor made it necessary to equip the BICh-11 with a low-power engine in pusher configuration.
In practice, the BICh-11 had been conceived to test in flight the OR-2 liquid propellant rocket engine developed by FA Tsander, which weighed only 18 kg and was capable of developing a thrust of 0.62 kN. The funds for the modification of the model and the installation of the reactive power plant were approved by OSOVIAJIM on February 25, 1932. The installation of this engine was just behind the cabin. The fuel and oxidizing agent tanks were designed in fairings located on the wings, on both sides of the central fuselage.
The BICh-11 was conceived as a single-seater experimental glider, built entirely of wood. The cantilever and high-set wing had a trapezoidal shape and a three-spar structure. This wing was conceived in three sections: a central one forming an integral part of the fuselage and the long wing consoles with the rudders at the ends. The union of the consoles to the centroplane was made by means of some steel pieces. In the centroplane, they conceived some fairings that contained the chemical components necessary to make the OR-2 liquid reactive engine functional.
The entire leading edge was covered with a 1mm thick plywood sheet. The straight trailing edge featured control surfaces along the entire span, located on a bar on the soffit of the wing, just below the trailing edge. In the external part the ailerons were located, also used as elevator rudders. On the inside were the adjustable stabilizers on the ground and a little further inside the elevator. Adjustable stabilizers on the ground were located on the inside.
The fuselage was covered with plywood. The landing gear was composed of two independent wheels and a tail skid.
The pilot was located in a closed cockpit at the nose.
In mid-February 1932 the BICh-11 was transported to the GIRD and on February 22 it was flown in the form of a glider by Sergei Koroliov. Also in glider form, the BICh-11, piloted by Koroliov, flew in the IX National Sailing Competitions held in 1933.
The first tests work jet engine OR-2 began the 18 of March of 1933, but only 10 days after FA Tsander died and with him the work of building the rocket plane - 1 (RP-1), assigned name to the project.
Given the lack of a power plant, the BICh-11 was modified to use a 27 hp ABC Scorpion piston engine driving a propeller, with which the tests were continued. In this configuration the BICh-11 flew satisfactorily, becoming one of the first airplanes in a flying wing configuration with a trapezoidal ground plan to do so.
In the version with a piston engine, some modifications were made to the wing plan and its control surfaces. The ABC Scorpion power plant was located at the end of the fuselage fairing as an extension of the cabin and powered a two-bladed wooden propeller.
Engine: 27 hp ABC Scorpion
Wingspan: 12.10 m
Wing area: 20.00 m²
Length: 3.25 m
Empty weight: 200 kg
Accommodation: 1
Cheranovski BICh-11 glider
Cheranovski RP-1 with wing fairings for liquid reactive engine fuel
BICh-11 in its propeller configuration
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